Gay marriage

Gay marriage vs. religious freedom, the latest installment

Featured image Two ordained ministers, a husband and wife, who perform marriage ceremonies but oppose gay marriage reportedly face a 180-day jail term and a $1,000 fine for each day they decline to celebrate a same-sex wedding. The ministers operate a chapel in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. The city has an ordinance that prohibits discrimination, including on the basis of sexual orientation, in public accommodations. Recently, the ministers turned down a gay couple’s »

New frontiers in freedom

Featured image I may be mistaken, but it has seemed to me for quite a while that the campaign for gay marriage is about something other than “freedom” or “acceptance” or “equal rights.” The point of the campaign seems to me that we are compelled to get our minds right, to borrow the resonant phrase of the jailers in Cool Hand Luke. The proponents of “marriage equality” demand our inner assent. Disapproval »

Supreme Court declines to review same-sex marriage cases

Featured image The U.S. Supreme Court has decided not to review lower court rulings that allow same-sex marriage in Virginia, Utah, Oklahoma, Indiana and Wisconsin. It would have required the votes of only four Justices to decide to review the issue, but the votes were not to be had. Nor did any Justice write a dissent from the denial of review. What does today’s decision not to decide mean. Ed Whelan argues, »

Divorce and Social Science

Featured image On Thursday USA Today reported on what has been the next shoe waiting to drop for a long time: the first gay divorces: BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – The mood was festive as Judge Valeri Haughton spent the morning of June 26 presiding over marriage ceremonies for gay couples who rushed to the Monroe County courthouse here after a federal judge struck down Indiana’s ban on same-sex marriage. That afternoon, the judge »

Ms. Hillary says

Featured image NPR’s Terry Gross (“Fresh Air”) interrogated Ms. Hillary on air concerning her views on gay marriage (audio below). Has she always supported it? Has she ever suppressed her views in deference to public opinion? Would she say her view has “evolved”? (Answer: “I think I’m an American. I think we all have evolved…”) Gross notes Ms. Hillary’s evasions and persists in her efforts to extract an answer. She even seems »

Roots of totalitarian liberalism

Featured image With the cashiering of Brendan Eich as Mozilla’s chief executive officer last week, we are struggling to understand what we have just seen. There is an important book that remains to be written about the totalitarian imperative at the heart of liberalism, and the insight into the nature of the larger forces at work is one of the many reasons Eich’s forced departure strikes a nerve. It is a revealing »

The rise of totalitarian liberalism

Featured image George Orwell gave us a look at the operation of a totalitarian one-party state in 1984. This week Mozilla gave us a look at its nascent liberal variant. Recently appointed CEO Brandon Eich was officially made a nonperson. He was dispatched down the memory hole as the company announced that he has “step[ped] down from his role as CEO” as a result of his contribution of $1,000 to the passage »

Mozilla speaks, sort of

Featured image Under the heading “Brendan Eich steps down as CEO,” Mozilla has posted the following statement in the name of executive chairwoman Mitchell Baker. Eich has “stepped down” from his position at Mozilla days after his appointment, following the revelation that he contributed $1,000 to the campaign supporting the passage of Prop 8 in California six years ago. The Wall Street Journal covers the story here. Baker’s statement is must reading, »

Liberal fascism revisited

Featured image The hearing of the Hobby Lobby case by the Supreme Court this week inspired Kevin Williamson to meditate on the deeper currents running through it. Williamson’s NRO column is “The right not to be implicated” and I commend it to your attention. Williamson notes the dramatic revision of public orthodoxy that moves us “from forbidden to compulsory in record time, and vice versa.” He invites us to consider the case »

Brewer vetoes S.B. 1062

Featured image Arizona Governor Jan Brewer has vetoed Arizona S.B. 1062, legislation that I wrote about here and here. Brewer claimed that S.B. 1062 “does not address a specific or present concern related to religious liberty in Arizona” and that it was “broadly worded and could result in unintended and negative consequences.” Her first claim makes little sense. Arizona already has a Religious Freedom Restoration Act. S.B. 1062 amends the Act to »

No, this is not Jim Crow for gays, Part Two

Featured image As I explained here, Arizona S.B. 1062 would not subject gays to a regime of discrimination. The bill is simply an attempt (successful in my view) to balance the right to religious freedom and the right of non-discrimination. Eleven leading religious-liberty scholars have written to Arizona Governor Jan Brewer to provide her with a sorely needed rational analysis of S.B. 1062 as she considers whether to sign it. The professors »

No, this is not Jim Crow for gays — understanding Arizona S.B. 1062

Featured image The Arizona legislature has passed S.B. 1066. It amends a 1999 Arizona law called the Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA). It does so in an attempt to strengthen the ability of vendors to follow their religious conscience by, for example, declining to provide services at gay weddings. The text of the legislation can be found here. The legislation has generated much criticism. The two most recent Republican presidential candidates have »

Supreme Court halts gay marriage in Utah, for now

Featured image The Supreme Court has stayed a Utah federal district judge’s decision that struck down the state’s ban on same-sex marriage. The Supreme Court’s order stops for now a wave of same-sex marriages across the state. Utah’s ban is reinstated and will remain in force pending appellate review. There were no dissents from the Supreme Court’s stay order, which suggests that all nine Justices agree with it. However, the order tells »

Polygamy: It’s Coming

Featured image In Lawrence v. Texas, the U.S. Supreme Court, reversing its own then-recent holding in Bowers v. Hardwick, ruled that laws against homosexual sodomy are unconstitutional–even though the Constitution says nothing about sex, let alone sodomy–on the ground that the right of privacy (also never mentioned in the Constitution) protects all consensual, private sexual contact between adults. Lawrence immediately was seen as a milestone in the campaign for gay marriage. Some »

Study: Graduation rates lag among children from same-sex households

Featured image A Canadian study by professor Douglas Allen of Simon Frazier University finds that children raised by married biological parents do better in school than children raised by same-sex couples. The study appears in the Review of Economics of the Household, which I understand is a peer-reviewed journal. The study uses a random 20 percent sample of 2006 Canadian census data. According to the author, this sample size “allows for control »

House of Cards of Windsor

Featured image Justice Scalia registered a stinging dissent in the Windsor case, in which the Supreme Court invalidated the Defense of Marriage Act on grounds that–to be polite–are opaque. My old friend Larry Tribe, now the Left’s favorite constitutional scholar, took Scalia to task. And George Mason’s Michael Greve unloaded on Tribe with both barrels. You won’t see better pyrotechnics until the day after tomorrow. You really should read it all, but »

Why the unusual 5-4 split in the Prop 8 case?

Featured image The Supreme Court’s decision in Perry that the parties defending the constitutionality of Prop 8 lack standing did not conform to the usual pattern in cases decided 5-4. Usually in such cases, we see the Court’s four liberal Justices — Ginsburg, Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan — voting one way while either four or five of the remaining Justices vote the other. Typically, if only four of these Justices vote together, »